No one is above the law, not even the President of the United States or a former president. It’s a refrain that our team at NPI has heard a million times in the past few years, and it’s an important one. Today, a grand jury gave it meaning by indicting Donald Trump, a pathological liar and neofascist who should never have been entrusted with any position of responsibility, let alone the presidency.
Trump’s lawbreaking predated his four years in the White House, continued while he occupied the Oval Office, and continued even after he left. Yet until a few hours ago, he had only been the subject of investigations and no charges.
That has now changed. The logjam has broken; we have an indictment.
It may well be just the first of many indictments.
Comedian John Fugelsang drove this point home in a post on Twitter: “Stop viewing #TrumpIndictment as ‘the first U.S. president to ever be indicted’ and start viewing it merely as ‘Trump’s first indictment.’ ”
The indictment is under seal, so we don’t know what the charges are yet. At this moment, it’s simply good to know that the indictment has been handed down. That District Attorney Alvin Bragg’s team has succeeded in laying out the evidence for a panel of New Yorkers that Trump violated the laws of the Empire State.
Trump must now surrender to the authorities in New York.
It’s expected he will be fingerprinted and a police mugshot will be taken.
“It appears the #TrumpIndictment is a felony indictment, which is more serious than the misdemeanor some have suggested,” noted Representative Ted Lieu. “No one outside the grand jury and Manhattan DA’s office has knowledge of the charges or evidence. Let’s let the judicial system do its job without interference.”
“For those asking about my statement on the indictment of Donald Trump — who never said sorry for calling for my execution — here it is: Karma,” tweeted Yusef Abdus Salaam, one of the exonerated Central Park Five.
“The indictment of Donald Trump is no cause for joy. The hard work and conscientiousness of the grand jurors must be respected. Now let truth and justice prevail. No one is above the law,” tweeted Clark Brewster, the current attorney for Stormy Daniels, adding the hashtag #TeamStormy.
Daniels retweeted that with the words “Thank you.”
““For the first time in our Country’s history, a President (current or former) of the United States has been indicted,” said Trump’s former “fixer” Michael Cohen, who has already served time for the lawbreaking he did on behalf of Trump.
“I take no pride in issuing this statement and wish to also remind everyone of the presumption of innocence; as provided by the due process clause.”
“However, I do take solace in validating the adage that no one is above the law; not even a former President. Today’s indictment is not the end of this chapter; but rather, just the beginning. Now that the charges have been filed, it is better for the case to let the indictment speak for itself. The two things I wish to say at this time is that accountability matters and I stand by my testimony and the evidence I have provided to DANY [District Attorney of New York].”
“For all of Trump’s bravado about looking forward to a perp walk, the reality is that he has feared and avoided an indictment for more than four decades, after first being criminally investigated in the 1970s. He watched in horror as his former chief financial officer, Allen Weisselberg, surrendered to authorities and it was shown on television in 2021,” The New York Times’ Maggie Haberman wrote.
Although Trump had predicted days ago that he would be arrested (his timing was off), MAGAworld still seemed taken aback by the news of the indictment.
There were audible gasps from FNC staffers that were heard on-air when Trump’s once former cable channel reported the news of his indictment.
Perhaps they didn’t believe it was actually going to happen. Well, it has.
Despite not knowing what the charges are, Trump defender Alan Dershowitz declared on live TV: “They’ve made a foolish, foolish decision which will cause the case to be thrown out, I think, on statute of limitations grounds.”
That’s nonsense. District Attorney Alvin Bragg has moved methodically and thoughtfully towards this point. Only people in Trump’s camp, who have a vested interest in defending him no matter what, would say something like that before even reading the charges against him.
We’ve sometimes seen people opine that Trump wouldn’t ever get held accountable — that he’d just get to skate. That sentiment is understandable given how long the wheels of justice have taken to begin turning. But they’re spinning now. And it’s quite possible they’ll continue to for the rest of Trump’s life.
In a nation of laws, accountability like this is hugely important and absolutely necessary. Our thanks to Bragg and the prosecutors for their work on this case.